Language and competitiveness in Trinidad and Tobago: Taking stock

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Title: Language and competitiveness in Trinidad and Tobago: Taking stock
Author: Carter, Beverly-Anne
Abstract: Language and Competitiveness is a multilingual, multidisciplinary, and multi-component research project that looks at the nexus between language and competitiveness in contemporary Trinidad and Tobago. The project, which is funded by the GORTT Research and Development Impact (RDI) FUND, has promised to deliver a number of outputs, outcomes, and benefits, that is, research impact, to different stakeholders beyond the academic community. In the short paper presented here, the focus is on two of the project's sub-projects: one which explores the linguistic, cultural, and sociological factors supporting or hindering trade with China; and the second a language audit documenting foreign language capacity and supply in the country. The paper shows how the project has been able to address certain national developmental issues in the area of linguistic and intercultural competence as they pertain to trading with China and documenting language capacity. A discussion of the outputs, outcomes, and benefits shows that the project is clearly fulfilling its mandate for research impact. Clear elements of best practice relevant to conducting research with impact also emerge from the discussion.
Description: Contribution to the Panel on New Directions in Foreign Language Research in Caribbean Higher Education at the Regional Conference on Institutionalising Best Practice in Higher Education, UWI, St. Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago, 24-26 June, 2015.
Date: 2015-07-15

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